Making staff redundant?

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Many employers are considering making staff redundant at the moment. Restructuring due to a change in strategy, or technological advances, can mean the mix of skills and knowledge your employees have, are not those you need, leading to a need to restructure.  Redundancies can also result from a requirement to cut costs and make efficiencies.

Good early planning and well thought out communications, will really make a difference to how your employees react to the news of potential redundancies.  Redundancies are felt like a loss, and the impact can be felt not only by those employees who are leaving your business, but also by those who remain.  Survivor guilt is a common issue.

So how should employers approach potential redundancies?

First of all, consider if redundancies are really needed.  If you’re restructuring, are there any new roles that existing employees could do, perhaps with additional training?  Can you reduce hours or pay for a temporary period?  Don’t make assumptions about what employees will and won’t accept as alternatives to losing their jobs.

Create a plan of how you are going to manage the redundancy process. You’ll have to decide how to select employees for redundancy, how to manage consultation with employees, what you are going to pay those who are made redundant and what support you’re going to provide both for those leaving your organisation and those who will remain.

Include a detailed communication plan. This really makes you think who needs to know what and when. At the end of the day, the way you treat your employees in a redundancy situation is a reflection of your brand and a demonstration of your company values.

The consultation process is determined mainly by the numbers of employees that you’re proposing to make redundant. There are regulations that dictate timescales when 20 or more employees are involved. There are also regulations which determine how and when to do this, and if you have them, internal policies and procedures need to be taken into account too.

Many employers will be considering making redundancies during furlough. This brings additional challenges in terms of consultation in particular but can be done. Employers and employees have adapted to home working and different ways of communicating, and ACAS guidance has been updated to deal with redundancy while on furlough.

We’ve a great deal of experience in the management of restructuring and redundancies and are skilled in guiding business leaders to create positive outcomes for the future.

Get in touch and let us explain how we can support you.